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Statement from Coates on terrorist activity in Russia

31 December 2013

The AOC joins IOC President Thomas Bach in condemning these cowardly acts and in expressing our condolences to the Russian people.

In a letter to the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin, President Bach has expressed the IOC’s confidence in the Russian authorities to deliver safe and secure Games in Sochi.  Like President Bach, the AOC is certain that everything will be done to ensure the security of the athletes and all of the participants of the Olympic Games.

We share Australian Foreign Affairs Minister, Julie Bishop’s concerns for the safety and welfare of our athletes and their families and spectators. We will continue to work closely with DFAT whose representatives have attended our Sochi planning meetings. We will impress on our athletes DFAT’s advice that they exercise a high degree of caution in Russia because of the threat of terrorist activity.  

And we will share with and impress on our athletes DFAT’s general travel advice for Russia (last issued Monday, 30 December 2013 and any updates) and specific Sochi Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games 2014 advice (last issued Friday, 20 December 2013 and any updates).  

None of our athletes will be travelling to or from Sochi by car, bus or train (all will be travelling by air); none will be training or competing outside of Sochi in Russia; and, none will be holidaying elsewhere in Russia after the Games. 

Families of athletes and all other participants of the Olympic Games, including media and spectators, should note the steps we are taking for the safety and welfare of our athletes, and themselves monitor DFAT’s last issued general Russia and specific Sochi Games travel advices at: 

http://smartraveller.gov.au/zw-cgi/view/Advice/Russia

http://www.smartraveller.gov.au/zw-cgi/view/travelbulletins/Sochi

John Coates AC

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